FAREWEL PRINCE RUPERT

My intentions for an early start evaporated when John produced a pot of fresh coffee and muffins straight from the oven.  We sat in the cockpit of Caro Babbo chatting and eating happily until late morning.  It was almost mid-day by the time I heaved the anchor from the mud and motored out of Russell Arm.

As I departed from the harbour I had one last look back at Prince Rupert.  I don’t suppose I will ever be back.  I first visited Rupert when I was at sea as second mate, back in the pre GPS days.  Rupert was a regular port of call as we were in the Pacific run taking Canadian grain to China and a welcome stop after the rigours of the North Pacific and Bering Sea.

Once out of the harbour the forecast wind didn’t show up so I motored and caught the tide down Arthur Passage and into Grenville Channel.  I hadn’t really wanted to go down Grenville Channel again but the weather really made the decision for me.  This is the classic inside passage route and I suppose I will meet some commercial traffic taking this sheltered route north and south.

This evening I have anchored in Kumealon Inlet, just off Grenville Channel.  Tomorrow if the wind and tide is complaisant I will try and transit the channel without another stop.  I think I will try a little fishing tonight.

GRENVILLE CHANNEL – BREAK OUT

Today it was my intention to have an easy travel up the Granville Channel and stay overnight at Kumealon Inlet.  We had a five o’clock start to get the ebb and made good time.  The weather was cold, overcast with low cloud and drizzle, but there was no wind and absolute calm.  When we arrived at Kumealon. I decided to continue and make the most of the calm conditions as north westerly winds had been forecast again.

We carried on and Arrived at Gunboat Harbour on Gibson Island at the top of Granville Channel where we anchored.  I had lunch and a siesta was needed after such an early start.  An hour later I was woken by a bunch of fishermen who were also using the anchorage for rafting up and doing fishy stuff.  As it was still calm and the tide was turning in our favour I decided to make a hop over to Lawson Harbour just off Porcher Island and anchor there for the night.

Today was cold again, its four days since we have seen the sun.  I was passed by an American sailor today, he had full cold gear on including woolly hat and gloves.  I feel better now, I thought I was being a wimp and needed to harden up.  But other people are feeling the cold as well, its not just me.  I will look for some gloves at the next port call.

We did eight and a half hours motoring today, there is no option when there is no wind.  We are now clear of Grenville Channel and into more open waters again.  Options for tomorrow are either Prince Rupert or Port Edward.  I may try Port Edward first as I have to clear out from Prince Rupert anyway. Total voyage distance 632.2 miles.

Logged 25th May 2016

GRENVILLE CHANNEL – CONTINUED

We caught the tide up Grenville Channel this afternoon from Lowe Inlet where we passed a comfortable night at anchor.  We anchored just inside the entrance to the inlet on a bank and I expected to be disturbed by the wash from passing ships, but it was all peaceful.  I have only seen two cruise ships so far, its still early in the season.

A dark gloomy day going up Grenville Channel. Photo Ray Penson
A dark gloomy day going up Grenville Channel. Photo Ray Penson

It was a good job we had the tide behind us today as the North Westerly wind and chop were on the nose and it would have been very heavy going without a push.  This is the last time I will come up Grenville Channel so am making the most of it with three stops planned.  Today we passed the narrow section and a couple of big waterfalls, particularly spectacular is the waterfall at Saunders Creek as it spills from a mountain lake high above.  There are quite a few bald eagles along the Channel, some flying very high, don’t know why they fly so high.

The weather was gloomy today, overcast with the odd rain shower.  The wind was bitterly cold and I had full thermals and multiple layers and still felt the chill.  My thermometer says it was ten degrees, it felt like minis ten.  I expect it will start warming up next month as we get into summer.

Ray Penson

This evening we pulled into Klewnuggit Inlet.  The anchorage that I targeted was, as the book said, spectacular.  High mountains and sheer granite cliffs on three sides.  The problem is that high mountains mean an early sunset and late sunrise.  Its gets cold after sunset and I didn’t fancy a cold night so moved out to another anchorage.  Its hard to find shallow water here to anchor in, I am in a bay very close to the shore where I found some water less than twenty meters deep, just have enough room to swing and clear the rocks.

Tomorrow I expect to overnight at Kumealon Inlet on the north shore of Grenville Channel.  Total voyage distance 599.9

Logged 24th May 2016